21st July, 2010
The ongoing renovation works at the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos, Nigeria is a source of joy for athletes, who always visit the Sports City for their daily training session.
The Lock Up Hall, the Brai Ayonote Boxing Gym and the Weightlifting Hall are all undergoing renovation due to the directive of the Chairman, National Sports Commission, NSC and Minister of Sports, Ibrahim Bio.
Athletes, who spoke to P.M Sports during the week, said it is a good development that Bio has shown that he is a Minister of Sports, unlike his predecessors, who were only interested in developing football.
The Lock Up Hall and other facilities at the stadium have been in poor condition for a long time, forcing athletes to look for other avenues for their training session. But with the current works going on, some of them have said that they wouldnâ€™t need to go elsewhere. They saidÂ the coming on board of the former Minister of Transportation is giving athletes hope. Isioma Ekikioma, a weightlifter expressed joy over the renovation work going on at the gymnasium saying â€œI thank the Minister of Sports for doing a good job with this renovation. This is because this place has been in a very bad state for a very long time, but with what we are seeing now, we can heave a sign of relief.â€
Essien Offiong, a professional boxer, who fights in the middleweight category, also saidÂ he is pleased with the renovation works at the Brai Ayonote Boxing Gym, adding that state of the art facilities should be put in place after the renovation .
He said if his predecessorsÂ had been like him (Bio), Nigerian sports would be better for it.
According to the Cross River state-born pugilist, â€œthe Minister, is doing his best. He is giving us cause to smile. The Brai Ayonote gym has been in bad state even before I became a professional boxer. But with the renovation, I know amateur boxers are in for a swell time.â€